Over the past years the trees have been spreading their roots under the driveway and the sidewalks. Recently the sidewalks have gotten lifted at odd angles. The portion of the sidewalk over the driveway has started to rock as the cars are driven over it. Basically the time has come to rip out some of the sidewalks, remove the roots and re-pour new concrete.
Originally I was insisting that we need to hire a contractor to come in and do the job. There was a total of 50′ of sidewalk that needed to be replaced. I think I was actually starting to win over my wife with the contractor until my very good buddy Mark made the comment “What are you thinking? We could do it in a weekend…” In that instant all my hopes of avoiding a very labor intensive job vanished.
We decided to tackle this project over the weekend of May 12th and 13th. The tear out of the old sidewalk to a full day for the two of us to complete. I rented a 70lb electric jackhammer and had a 10 yard dumpster to help with the tear out and removal. After 5 hours of the jackhammer, my wrists and arms were basically completely numb.
The cement truck was pretty cool. The truck actually mixes the sand, rock, mortar and water on the job site. The normal trucks have the cement mixed at a plant and then there is a rush to get the cement to the job site and off loaded before it begins to cook. With the 50′ of sidewalk I had calculated I would need 2 yards of concrete. I ended up using 2.5 yards. Part of the driveway was thicker than the expected 4 inches. With the truck mixing the concrete on site, it was no issue at all for the extra material. Also cleanup was a breeze. The truck just needed to clean out the auger and chutes.
Now that the project is completed and feeling has returned to my limbs, I’m glad the work is done. The sidewalk looks great. This past weekend I had 2 trucks deliver 7 yards of mulch and 5 yards of topsoil. Both trucks drove over the sidewalk with no issues at all. Whew!